Investment and Resources

Our annual budget is $160,000, which includes a faculty director who is responsible for providing leadership and administers programs on undergraduate research and creative scholarship across campus.

Undergraduate Research History

UMKC has been offering undergraduate students financial support to pursue projects under the mentorship of faculty mentors through the Students Engaged in Arts and Research (SEARCH) program since 2000. As part of UMKC’s strategic planning process in 2010, a task force of 17 faculty from across the university was charged to review the impact of the existing SEARCH experience on students and faculty, conduct a review of other models of undergraduate research programs and recommend a new model or models that can serve significantly more students with the goal of positively impacting student engagement and success.

As a result, the task force filed a 160-page report, including data on undergraduate research programs at colleges and universities recognized for their leadership in this area, at benchmark and aspirational peer institutions and at regional competitors. The task force recommended additional investment in the SEARCH program, which would allow students to use federal work-study dollars to work as research associates with faculty mentors and to integrate undergraduate research experiences into the curriculum. 

Subsequently, UMKC was awarded strategic investment funding from the UM System to build a more robust undergraduate research program and was charged with ensuring that the undergraduate research program supports the university’s recruitment and retention goals and that it targeted students from underrepresented groups and first-generation college students. This strategic investment funding has allowed UMKC to develop its current programs for undergraduate researchers and creative scholars.

Contact Us

Audrey Lester

Assistant Director
Email: lesterak@umkc.edu
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Sherry Neuerburg

Administrative Assistant
Email: neuerburgs@umkc.edu
Phone Number: 816-235-6163